Facilitate Incubation Centres at Academic Institutions
Antarprerana has collaborated with academic institutions to improve the quality of their entrepreneurship education by helping them to institutionalise Innovation Based Incubations (IBIs). Through IBIs, Antarprerana supports aspiring entrepreneurs in developing their businesses by providing a first-hand experience on how to start a business and an opportunity to develop their business model, experiment and learn from their mistakes through constant guidance and feedback loops from skilled mentors and peers. Antarprerana facilitates on institutionalising the IBI by advising on its vision, mission statement and strategic goals supported by continuous improvement through the company’s wide network.
In 2018, Antarprerana initiated partnership with 10 colleges across the country to facilitate entrepreneurship support to the upcoming critical mass of start-ups. Out of these, Antarprerana has started IBIs in 5 colleges.
Antarprerana focuses on early entrepreneurs at IBIs not only to test their business models, identify their minimum viable products but also allowing them to ‘fail fast and cheaply’ rather than failing at a later stage when the loss of accumulated investments is much higher.
Antarprerana has designed an intensive training program for initiating and running a business with a tailored course for startups. Launched in August 2016, Nava Udhyamshala is specially designed for aspiring entrepreneurs to equip them with knowledge, skills, and network required for transforming their ideas into businesses and towards sustainable growth. The course aims to build a solid foundation on which aspiring entrepreneurs can grow their enterprise. In each session, Antarprerana intakes 12 participants and provide them with coaching and mentorship for a month. So far 32 start-ups have participated in this flagship program.
In 2018, Antarprerana plans to conduct two additional sessions of the program. The Alumni of Nava Udhyamshala meets often to discuss their on-going progress and challenges observed while running their start-ups.
Direct Business Mentoring for SMEs
Antarprerana provides customised mentorship for start-ups and SMEs as per their requirement. Some of the problems that start-ups and SMEs generally face in the context of Nepal can be seen in the following table.
Table 1: constraints to SME expansion in Nepal
Antarprerana is working towards strengthening the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Nepal.
Although business advice and support is readily available at Antarprerana, to ensure that SMEs have sufficient technical guidance, Antarprerana has collaborated with governmental agencies such as the Industrial Enterprise Developmental Institute (IEDI) in providing support to SMEs. In 2018 alone, 9 IEDI SMEs were mentored by Antarprerana.
Business related advice provided by Antarprerana mentors is also tailored to meet the needs of the SME and can last between 3 and 12 months. So far, 25 SMEs have been successfully mentored internally from a range of different technical sectors (agriculture, IT, education, construction, hospitality, health and sanitation, clothing among others).
Sourcing Start-ups and Assistance Programs
With significant outreach and mentorship strengths, Antarprerana has been able to provide services to governmental, national and international organizations including media to identify, select and link appropriate entrepreneurs and SMEs for their programmes. Likewise, Antarprerana also serves entrepreneurs and companies to address their need by matching their interest and provide them with the opportunities that they were looking for. So far, Antarprerana has directly assisted more than 1500 SMEs and entrepreneurs including start-ups to develop linkages, seek investments, initiate partnership and foster national and international collaborations.
Antarprerana has been a sourcing partner for Rockstart – an accelerator program (2015 Nepal) and facilitated sourcing of more than 800 SMEs for Connect to Grow – an enterprise match making initiative (September 2016 to February 2017, UK). Often these programs support SMEs improve their investment readiness considerably providing a pipeline of investment opportunities for investors.
Antarprerana also works with various international comapnies and programs to provide Nepalese start-ups with international expertise and experience. We match various companies with international partners to help them grow beyond local and national boundaries. We have been collaborating and partnering with various international companies such as Connect-To-Grow, The Bridge International, PUM Netherlands Senior Experts, SAARC-Chamber of Commerce and Industries, etc. Through this vast range of international linkages, we have connected and worked with more than 500 national and international companies.